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Posts Tagged ‘chocolate tasting’

A few weeks ago, Sera from Candy Addict recommended a book by Chloe Doutre-Roussel called The Chocolate Connoisseur. I took Sera’s advice, picked it up, and devoured it in a couple sittings- it’s a great read for anyone interested in chocolate tasting, sourcing, and the professional possibilities chocolate offers.

Chocolate Connoisseur

As I read about Doutre-Roussel’s career as the chocolate buyer for Fortnum & Mason, her story began to sound familiar. Sure enough, I had heard it before. It turns out one of my other favorite chocolate history books, Chocolate: A Bittersweet Saga of Dark and Light by Mort Rosenblum, spends chapters profiling Doutre-Roussel and her expertise. Here’s the passage in which we first meet her. I love the new French vocab word, and I am going to start using it regularly in everyday conversation:

“Chloe is a chocolate lunatic. The French would call her une chocodépendante, which means, roughly, a chocoholic with class. This is no literary exaggeration. She wears dresses with discreet kangaroo pouches in front so she can sneak bites of chocolate during long business meetings. At ninety-nine pounds, she is an open-and-shut argument against killjoys who insist that chocolate makes you fat.” 🙂

I LOVE that image of chocolate hidden in pockets during the workday.  Chloe, you are kinda my hero.

In The Chocolate Connoisseur, Doutre-Roussel gives excellent pointers on how to conduct meaningful chocolate tastings to begin to take apart the different flavors and aromas present in different chocolates. The book is also a virtual encyclopedia of quality chocolatiers whose bars should be sampled. Although the overall message is to be open-minded and explore what tastes good to you personally, it’s nice to find a list of manufacturers whose chocolate, when tasted in comparison to each other, have varying dimensions that can help develop your palate.

My only question is whether anyone knows a good source for buying fine chocolate for delivery in the US. I’ve been through chocolatesource.com, but there are still some brands not featured there. I was specifically looking for the Pralus brand, and eventually I came upon World Wide Chocolate. I’d highly recommend this site as a resource for buying European chocolate bars from the US. But does anyone have any other favorite retailers??

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